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National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System

What is NPDES?

NPDES means National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System. This long mouthful is more commonly referred to as NPDES and no, it is not a disease but part of the Federal Clean Water Act which requires all states to implement a permitting process to control the discharge of pollution into lakes, rivers and the ocean. Water pollution in Southern California is a serious problem. Southern California beaches are often closed due to contaminated runoff from the region’s streets and storm water drainage system. Most of the San Gabriel Valley’s drinking water comes from ground water aquifers, which are also threatened by contaminated runoff. The NPDES regulations were created to address this polluted runoff at the local level.

Can I let any Water or oil Run off my property into the stree gutter?

It is illegal to allow oils, paints and other polluted water to run off your property into the public storm water system. All paints and oils must be disposed at a Hazardous Waste Roundup.

What do I do if I want to drain my swimming pool?

You must obtain a permit from the City Public Works Department (626-914-8246) before you can drain swimming pool water into the street.

What do I do if I wash my car in my driveway?

Currently, washing cars in residential driveways is not restricted. However, this could change in the future. Call the City Public Works Department (626-914-8246) for more information.

I have a small restaurant. Can I wash out my cleaning buckets in the parking lot?

If you are a business such as a restaurant, you may not pour any waste water, cleaning water, or fats, oils or grease into any parking lot area, storm drain or into the street. You must have a permit to dispose of this material into the sewer system. Call the Los Angeles County Sanitation District at (562) 699-7411 or (562) 908-4288 or the City of Glendora Public Works Department (626) 914-8246 for more information.

I have an auto repair business and I already pay hazardous waste fees. Why do I have to have more city inspections?

The City must conduct periodic site inspections for all industrial, automotive, and restaurant businesses to review the ways waste such as oils, grease and other hazardous liquids are disposed. These inspections are mandated by the State and are separate from any other hazardous material inspections conducted by other agencies. The City has established a fee to cover the costs of conducting these NPDES inspections.  Please call the City Public Works Department (626) 914-8246 or the Planning Department (626) 914-8214 for more information.

The State of California has implemented the Federal regulation by requiring all cities and counties to obtain permits to certify that the runoff from their jurisdictions does not contain trash or identified pollutants. Glendora is part of the Los Angeles County NPDES permit as a co-permittee. The Regional Water Quality Control Board is authorized to levy fines of up to $25,000 per day per violation for any jurisdiction which fails to comply with NPDES permit requirements.

The permit has many layers and many different requirements targeting activities to control runoff ranging from City street sweeping and education of local businesses to prohibit discharges into streets or storm drains to requiring new development to provide runoff control measures that will treat the first ¾ of an inch of rainfall on site.

Homeowners are currently not regulated beyond the obvious restriction against dumping hazardous materials, trash, oils or grease into streets or storm drains. Residential discharges such as irrigation over-spray, car-washing, and pool draining are not prohibited under the current permit but this could change with future permits. Residents should note that they must obtain a pool drainage permit from the City prior to draining pools into the street. This helps the City control potentially contaminated waters by requiring additional chlorine treatment prior to drainage.